Faculty & Staff Resources

Guidelines for Showing a DVD in Your Online Class

Although the library has a number of streaming videos available, and we can on a case by case basis, get streaming video rights for other videos for you to use in the classroom, sometimes videos are not available streaming and/or are cost prohibitive. In that case, you can show a DVD in an online class like you would with a face-to-face class. Below are some guidelines to follow to ensure that you are in compliance with copyright and fair use.

  • Before you show a DVD in class, check with the library to see if we already have it streaming or can get a license to stream it.
  • You can only show the video synchronously, meaning students need to gather in an online meeting space, such as Microsoft Teams, and view the video in real time. You cannot record the class for students to watch at a future time and students cannot record the class either.
  • The DVD showing should be limited to class members only. You should post the link to a Microsoft Teams meeting to your Canvas course (see instructions below).
  • You should include the following language on your Canvas site when posting the link to the meeting "NOTICE: The following presentation contains copyrighted materials used under the Multimedia Guidelines and Fair Use exemptions of U.S. Copyright law. Further use is prohibited."
  • Streaming services such as Netflix or Amazon Prime have no option for institutional use of their content. You are licensing it for personal use only and copyright law states you cannot show it in a classroom setting.
  • You cannot digitize a DVD and post it to your course.

If you have any questions about using a DVD in class and copyright compliance, please check with us.

Setting Up a Link to a Microsoft Teams Meeting in Canvas

The best way to show a DVD to your class is to create a Microsoft Teams meeting in Canvas.Open up a module in Canvas and go to edit. Use the "more external tools" in the toolbar to get the "Microsoft Teams Meetings" option.

more external tools screenshot

You will be prompted to sign in. Use your MCLA login.

sign in screenshot

Accept the permissions it asks for.

accept permissions screenshot

Set the day and time you will be showing the DVD.

set day and time screenshot

This is how the link will appear in your Canvas course.

ms team link in Canvas screenshot

Showing a DVD in Microsoft Teams

Showing a DVD in Microsoft Teams works best on a PC (not surprisingly). You can do it on a Mac but, especially in terms of audio, it won't work as well.

We recommend you test these instructions before class time. The library is happy to help you test, just contact us.

  • Put your DVD in your DVD drive. If you need an external drive, check with the Help Desk or the library to borrow one.
  • Open the link you created in Canvas to your Microsoft Teams meeting.
  • Use the MS Teams app, not the browser, and login with your MCLA login.
  • Using the toolbar near the bottom of the screen, click on the icon with the arrow on it to open up your options for presenting your screen.

toolbar screenshot

  • Check off "include system audio" so the students hear the audio through your computer rather than through your microphone. Then choose which window the DVD is playing.

screenshot of choosing DVD window

  • Your DVD should be playing on your screen and the students screens. Sit back and watch the movie.

Note for Mac users: you will need to download VLC Media Player and run the DVD in that instead of the Mac DVD player. Also, Mac users do not currently have an option to use system audio so the sound will be going through your computer's microphone. Make sure you are in a quiet room and can minimize background noise.